New Orleans Saints Coach Sean Payton doesn't expect receiver Marques Colston to be out long
"I don't want to diminish the fact that he had this scope, but they just cleaned up some loose bodies," Payton explained. "It was one of those decisions we made knowing that it wasn't going to be significant."
New Orleans Saints receiver Marques Colston had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee Tuesday, but Coach Sean Payton said the team's No. 1 passing target has not been ruled out for Sunday's game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Colston was not available for comment.
It seems very unlikely that Colston, who did not practice Thursday, will be able to bounce back in time to play Sunday. But Payton sounded optimistic that he won't be out long - which means it's possible that Colston could return in time for a potential playoff opener Jan. 8 or 9.
Payton said that Colston suffered the injury during Monday night's victory at Atlanta, though Colston was able to play the entire game through the pain.
This is a new injury for Colston, who has dealt with nagging left knee issues throughout his career. Colston has had arthroscopic surgeries on his left knee in each of the past three offseasons - including a late-summer procedure before the start of training camp this year.
He has obviously shown an ability to fight through those previous surgeries. He leads the Saints by a wide margin this year with 84 catches and 1,023 yards. And he ranks second on the team with seven touchdown catches.
Clearly, the 6-foot-4, 225-pounder would be missed if he misses significant time. He is quarterback Drew Brees' go-to guy on third downs and in the red zone. But part of the brilliance of the Saints' offense is its depth.
Ten different players on the Saints have at least 23 catches this year, and four wide receivers have at least 464 receiving yards. Receiver Robert Meachem, whose role would likely expand in Colston's absence, just caught a career-high 10 passes for 101 yards at Atlanta.
Veterans Lance Moore and Devery Henderson will also have to pick up the slack. And the Saints activated receiver Adrian Arrington from their practice squad Thursday as a precautionary measure in case Colston can't play.
To make room for Arrington, the Saints placed receiver/kickoff returner Courtney Roby on injured reserve. Roby was getting closer to returning from the concussion he suffered two weeks ago against St. Louis. But the Saints needed the roster spot.
Tailback Pierre Thomas has done a solid job as Roby's replacement on kickoff returns, and rookie cornerback Patrick Robinson was impressive in Roby's usual role on kick coverage units Monday night.
OTHER INJURIES - Tight end Jeremy Shockey was also held out of team drills Thursday with a groin injury that he aggravated during Monday night's game, leaving his status in doubt for Sunday. Fellow tight end David Thomas was back on the practice field in pads for the first time since he had his own arthroscopic knee surgery to repair lateral meniscus two weeks ago, but he was held out of team drills. Defensive tackle Anthony Hargrove (knee) and linebacker Anthony Waters (ankle) also were held out of team drills.
Tailback Chris Ivory, meanwhile, practiced fully for the first time since he suffered a hamstring injury two weeks ago.
"For the most part, I felt better than I felt last week," said Ivory, who was limited in practice last week and did not play Monday night at Atlanta.
Ivory said he's still taking things day by day, though, and wants to be smart heading toward the playoffs.
Meachem also practiced fully, which was a relief after he suffered an apparent injury while tripping over a cameraman as he jogged off the field Monday night.
All of the Saints' banged-up players got an extra day to heal when Payton gave them a day off from practicing Wednesday. Payton said he has always believed that the extra rest time after a Monday night game is more valuable than having a lighter workload on the day before a game.
"Just with where we're at in the schedule this late in the season and the type of game we just played, we wanted to still have that two-day timeframe prior to the next practice," Payton said.
New Orleans Saints Coach Sean Payton doesn't expect receiver Marques Colston to be out long | NOLA.com
Glad to see Dave Thomas back. I think Arrington could surprise some people if called on. We'll miss Colston till he gets back but other guys will step up.
To honest with ya'll I would like to see what Arrington can do. I really don't think he'll play much if at all.
Makes Moore the first choice go to in must have situations.
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